The first major race for inflatable boats to be held in the United States featured a variety of manufacturers' top boats and drivers.
SV: Competitors assembling boats on beach (3 shots)
GV: Rubber boats with outboards attached being launched. (2 shots)
SV: Large boats motoring out to race area. (2 shots)
SV: Spectators watch from beach as boats race offshore. (2 shots)
GV/TV: Pilot boat leads competitors around course.
GV AERIAL: Leading boats in open sea
SPORT: BOAT RACING
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Background: The first major race for inflatable boats to be held in the United States featured a variety of manufacturers' top boats and drivers. The race was held off Florida.
SYNOPSIS: The smaller boats had a le Mans-type start, beginning as deflated bundles on the beach. Inflatable boats have been developed for a wide variety of purposes, and their special characteristics were seriously tested during the gruelling competition. Apart from being easy to store and transport they are resistant to impact damage, stable in the water and generally safe...And an enthusiastic band of drivers finds them fun to race.
The event began with a grand parade from the Miami waterfront to the start line. The entrants ranged from 5 horsepower (3.75 kilowatts) dinghies to high-speed racers of more than 75 horsepower (56 kilowatts). Depending on the size of the boat and its motor, the inflatables raced over distances ranging from three miles (4.8 kilometres) to fifty miles (80.4 kilometres) Among the larger boats were experimental craft entered by manufacturers and the United States Coastal System.
The race attracted competitors from around the world, including top Australian driver Ken Warbie, and former European and U.K. Inflatable Racing Champion Tim Curtis.
the six classes catered for the varying abilities of the entries, and they started at intervals. The races were a showcase for the different styles, sizes, brands and capabilities of inflatable boats.
The big horsepower (kilowatt) class was won by a Novurania, driven by Charles Cross, followed by Metzeler driven by an Australian, Chris Kennedy. The experimental class winner was a Semperit-??? Pont boat made of a new fibre for strength with lightness.